Cheese tea – think cream cheese, not gouda – is the new cool beverage craze in Asia. The green or fruit teas are topped with frothy cream cheese, served slightly sweet or sprinkled with sea salt.
The trend “was thought to have started a few years ago, with the introduction of popular tea shops like Heekcaa (now known as Heytea), Royaltea and Regiustea, all of which have China origins and offer cheese tea,” according to the website Star2.com.
Regiustea boasts that its cheese teas “are made using Australian cream cheese (the brand uses 20kg of cream cheese in a week) which is blended with condensed milk and other ingredients,” the site reported. “The cold teas in each drink are made by soaking tea leaves in cold water for eight hours. Each cheese tea drink has an 80:20 proportion of tea to cheese.”
The brand’s “uji matcha” cheese tea is one of its most popular flavors, while its signature “choco cheese” combines chocolaty flavors with cream cheese.
SBS, an Australian website, meanwhile reported “the latest beverage trend gripping Asia comes courtesy of Singaporean tea brand LiHO (which means “How are you?” in Hokkein). …Food and beverage group RTG Holdings are moving bubble tea chain Gong Cha outlets out of Singapore, and rebranding them as LiHO” which features cheese tea.
Straws aren’t recommended, the article noted: “The two elements of the drink (cheese and tea) should remain distinct. Instead, the cup should be tipped into the mouth, invariably leaving a highly Instagrammable ‘cheese ‘tache’.”
When cheese tea arrived at the Happy Lemonbubble tea stand in New York, Metro US announced the arrival of “a new Taiwanese trend.”
Never mind its origins — how does cheese tea taste? Malaysian food blogger Ethan Wong https://3thanwong.com/ wrote, after trying the tea, ” The cheese layer is full of punch – so fluffy, thick, creamy and rich with a hint of saltiness boost the flavors of the cheese…When you have a sip as instructed, 40 degrees tilted, right amount of cheese and tea fills your taste buds, bursting with complex flavor as you gulp ‘em down!”